A couple months back, Irish songwriter and Artist To Watch Paddy Hanna announced his third album, The Hill. It once more finds Hanna teaming with Girl Band’s Daniel Fox as his producer, and based on first single “Cannibals,” it appeared as if Hanna’s idiosyncratic songwriting might be going into darker, weirder territory. Today, he’s back with another new song that shows a completely different side of him.
The new track is called “Colosseum,” and it’s got a premise that’s both quirky and poignant. “‘Colosseum is a doo-wop song about gladiators, or more specifically a song that deals with feeling out of step in a world not made for you,” Hanna explained in a statement. “You’re welcome to read into the allegories, but I’d be just as happy if you took the words literally and treated it as the rock ‘n’ roll anthem for gladiators, your call!”
“Colosseum” is The Hill’s airy and catchy closer. For listeners who found their way to Hanna through his sophomore outing Frankly, I Mutate, this might sound like a new interpretation of the sound Hanna had previously established. In a way, it sounds like some kind of mixture between Pulp, the Walkmen, and Roy Orbison. All of which is to say: No matter which approach you take or whether you follow Hanna’s advice on the song’s meaning, “Colosseum” is a promising glimpse of The Hill. Check it out below, along with a live performance video of the track.
The Hill is out 10/16 via Strange Brew.